With Coronavirus spreading to almost over 100 countries, companies are rapidly switching towards remote work environments. The pandemic has forced many to go from lively office environments to remote workplaces. It has become the most significant factor impacting our social lives. Where the Coronavirus outbreak is a good opportunity for some to test working from home at a scale, there is a growing frustration amongst employees who feel stranded in restricted work environments.
With almost 69% of businesses already built on remote working policy in the US, this year marks a historic transformation towards virtual workplaces (definitely not how we envisioned it!). Of course, it did not occur without its pros and cons.
So, how does “Work from Home” Really Feel?
In this wake of the pandemic, when there are thousands of people joining the virtual world, those who have had the privilege to enjoy this glory are coming forward to quote their experience. “Getting plenty of work done but lacking stimulation and missing out on human interaction” are a few to mention. “Screens are distancing”, confesses Thalia Wheatley, psychological and brain science professor at Dartmouth, whose interest particularly lies in finding the difference between face to face and online interaction.
Stocks that Stood Their Ground!
As Zoom stock prices double over the past few months, Microsoft Teams that allow employees to video chat and share documents has seen a whopping 500 percent increase in the number of meetings, conferences, and calls over Teams in China, alone! However, “work from home” environment does not compliment innovative thinking and creativity. Creative agencies, for instance, whose idea generation engine runs on brainstorming sessions and discussions, often find it difficult to get their powerhouse back up.
Experimenting with Workplaces is Exciting!
According to a study conducted in 2016 “Does Working From Home Work?” by a Chinese travel agency, the company first experimented on a small group of individuals by allowing them to work from home. Initially, the results awed everyone! Employee productivity went up, job satisfaction increased and the company saved at least $1000 per employee in terms of reduced office space. But, when the policy was implemented company-wide, it raised havoc! One complaint swamped everything: loneliness.
Why “remote working conditions” are a Big NO?
Lesser time and energy spent travelling along with the absence of noisy coworkers might make “work from home” seem like an ideal work culture but it lacks the fundamental human need for the sense of community, a need that precedes all! After all, there is a reason why companies like Yahoo, Best Buy and Aetna instructed their employees to make the offices alive again after experimenting with remote work environments in the past years.
It’s not that bad Afterall.
Where a company might have to weigh the pros and cons of a “work from home” culture, restricted working conditions are, nonetheless, ideal in terms of employee safety and productivity, encouraging flexibility and improved focus. Employees become tech-savvy as they actively collaborate over WhatsApp groups, Team Meetings or Google Hangouts and Emails, making them communication experts. Employees working from the comfort of their homes is a great plus as they can say goodbye to suit and tie! Flexibility in work hours allow a better work-life balance and also improves the bond of trust between the employee and the organization. PGi has revealed that remote working environments reduce stress because employees can skip not just annoying commutes to work but also escape stressful work environments. Conclusively, while getting to work from Pajamas is a great option for employees, maintaining a balance in every aspect of life is the key to happiness for all.